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Trump got slapped down by G7 leaders after advocating for Russia

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President Donald Trump derailed a major meeting with world leaders at the annual Group of Seven summit on Saturday evening after he insisted that Russia should be re-invited to the international gathering, The Washington Post reported Tuesday.

The president interrupted talks of the fires in the Amazon and Iran’s nuclear capacity by advocating for Russia to be readmitted to the gathering of industrialized nations at a dinner in Biarritz, France on Saturday night.

Russia was expelled from the then-G8 in 2014 over its annexation of Crimea from Ukraine, which violated international laws and agreements.

Trump’s comments initiated a discussion at the dinner about “whether the leaders should assign any special weight to being a democracy,” The Post reported. While most of the world leaders staunchly believed they should, Trump didn’t.

A senior official at the meeting told The Post that Trump crossed his arms and appeared to take a more physically combative stance as multiple leaders rejected his comments.

“The consequence is the same as if one of the participants is a dictator,” an official told The Post. “No community of like-minded leaders who are pulling together.”

Read more: Trump is pushing to let Russia re-join the G7, and the White House claims that France approves

Trump may be able to bring Putin back to the G7 as next year’s host

Pablo Martinez Monsivais/Associated Press

Officials said that at least two of the leaders present, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Italy’s acting prime minister Giuseppe Conte, did not push back against Trump’s position.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson praised French President Emmanuel Macron’s performance at the dinner on Sunday morning. “You did very well there last night. My God, that was a difficult one,” Johnson said, according to The Post.

Trump on Monday announced that he would invite Russian President Vladimir Putin to next year’s summit.

“Would I invite him? I would certainly invite him,” he told reporters. “Whether or not he could come, psychologically, I think that’s a tough thing for him to do,” because Putin is “a proud person.”

The US will host next year’s G7 gathering, so Trump may have the power to unilaterally re-invite Putin to the meeting.

Read more: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Greta Thunberg want everyone to fly less to fight climate change. Germany and Sweden are already embracing the ‘flight shame’ movement.

Macron, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and other leaders have made clear that they won’t consider supporting Russia’s readmittance unless the country helps promote peace in Ukraine.

“One year ago, in Canada, President Trump suggested reinviting Russia to the G-7, stating openly that Crimea’s annexation by Russia was partially justified. And that we should accept this fact. Under no condition can we agree with this logic,” European Council President Donald Tusk told reporters over the weekend.

The president argued last week that it doesn’t make sense to exclude Russia — and its leader President Vladimir Putin — from the gathering “because a lot of the things we talk about have to do with Russia.”

Trump hasn’t mentioned Crimea or suggested that Russia would need to make any concessions in order to rejoin the group as part of his recent push. Instead, Trump has repeatedly blamed President Barack Obama for being “outsmarted” by Russia and then demanding the country’s exclusion.

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